First India-Australia one-dayer called off due to rain


Bangalore : Rain played spoilsport Saturday leading to the first one-day international Future Cup between India and Australia being called off due to a wet outfield at the Chinnaswamy Stadium here.

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The match was poised for a thriller with Australia, riding on a power-packed 130 by Michael Clarke, made 307 for the loss of seven in 50 overs. In reply, the Twenty20 World Champions were stranded at nine for one wicket in 2.4 overs when the rain gods came down heavily.

It was a poor start for India as Sachin Tenulkar departed without opening his account after he was adjudged leg before wicket in the last ball of the second over by Mitchell Johnson. Tendulkar’s opening partner Gautam Gambhir was unbeaten on four runs while all-rounder Irfan Pathan, who was sent up was yet to face a ball.

About 181 minutes of the game was lost due to heavy showers, which continued for two hours. The covers were called in at 6.58 p.m. The umpires Steve Bucknor and Suresh Shastri called-off the match at 9.57 p.m. due to the wet outfield at the flood-lit stadium.

Earlier in the day, Australian captain Adam Gilchrist won the toss and decided to bat on a surface, which had a tinge of grass on it. His decision came as a surprise and the Indian bowlers tried to make full use of the conditions, with the Australians struggling at 90 for four in the 17th over.

The Indians purchased good movement from the pitch but were undisciplined in line and length, especially Sreesanth, but the Kochi guy still managed to scalp three wickets for 55 runs from his 10 overs.

But the feel good factor in the Indian team, which was basking in the glory of the Twenty20 win, was shattered by Clarke, who made his highest one-day score of 130 (132 balls, 10x4s, 3x6s) and guided his team to a challenging total.

The Australian inning started in a flashy style with Gilchrist hitting Zaheer Khan through the covers in the first ball of the day. The Australian captain was starting to look indomitable as he whipped Sreesanth for another four, down the leg side, in the second over.

But the Australian captain fell to Zaheer’s trap in the third over when he went after a wayward delivery and a brilliant diving catch by Yuvraj Singh in covers ended his innings for just 12 runs.

It was next Sreesanth’s turn to strike and the fast bowler after two wide balls in the third over produced a peach of a delivery and struck on Brad Hodge’s pad to get him leg before wicket.

Opener Matthew Hayden was a mute spectator till the time he was joined by Clarke in the middle. Hayden wasn’t getting much strike but when he got the burly left-handed batsman he spanked the Indian bowlers to all parts of the ground and raced on to score 34 off 39 deliveries.

Hayden was slowly building up a partnership with Clarke and was getting back his rhythm. But it was Sreesanth again, who rattled Hayden’s wicket to reduce the Australians to 78 for three in the 15th over.

Sreesanth might have been wayward, but in the 17th over he foxed Andrew Symonds (7) with a slower delivery to get him leg before wicket.

With the team struggling at 90/4, Clarke played a beautiful knock of 130, his highest score in one-dayers, to drag his team out of a precarious condition.

The 26-year-old batsman played sensibly and was responsible for two crucial partnerships, with Brad Haddin (69) and James Hopes (37) and set up a challenging total for the newly crowned Twenty20 World Champions.

Clarke added 144 runs for the fifth wicket with Haddin, which turned out to be the foundation of the Australian innings. The partnership was broken by Yuvraj Singh, who beat Haddin in flight and it was captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who stumped him out.

It was a fine innings under pressure by Haddin, who came in as a replacement for injured regular skipper Ricky Ponting.

Clarke then joined hands with Hopes to accelerate the scoring and caught the Indian bowlers off guard with some huge hits. Hopes hope of getting a deserving half-century came to an end when he tried to hit Zaheer over the long-on but ended up in the palms of Tendulkar, who was just a meter from the rope.

Clarke was run out in the last ball of the innings when he scampered for a run but Zaheer kept his nerves cool to end the centurion’s innings.


India vs. Australia, first one-day international, Chinnasawamy Stadium (day/night), Bangalore, Sep 29

Adam Gilchrist c Yuvraj b Khan 12
Matthew Hayden b Sreesanth 34
Brad Hodge lbw Sreesanth 0
Michael Clarke run out (Khan) 130
Andrew Symonds lbw Sreesanth 7
Brad Haddin st Dhoni b Yuvraj Singh 69
James Hopes c Tendulkar b Khan 37
Brett Lee not out 0
Extras: (b 4, lb 1, w 11, nb 2) 18
Total: (for seven wickets in 50 overs) 307

Fall of wickets: 1-14 (Gilchrist, 2.1 overs), 2-18 (Hodge, 3.1), 3-78 (Hayden, 14.2), 4-90 (Symonds, 16.3), 5-234 (Haddin, 41.5), 6-307 (Hopes, 49.5), 7-307 (Clarke, 49.6)

Zaheer Khan 10-0-64-2 (1nb, 2w)
Sreesanth 10-0-55-3 (1nb, 6w)
Rudra Pratap Singh 10-0-67-0 (2w)
Irfan Pathan 8-0-38-0 (1w)
Ramesh Powar 6-1-50-0
Yuvraj Singh 6-0-28-1

Gautam Gambhir not out 4
Sachin Tendulkar lbw Johnson 0
Irfan Pathan not out 0
Extras (b 4, w 1) 5
Total (for one wicket in 2.4 overs) 9

Fall of wicket: 1-1 (Tendulkar, 1.6 overs)

Brett Lee 1.4-1-4-0
Mitchell Johnson 1-0-1-1 (1w)

Result: Match abandoned due to wet outfield
Umpires: Steve Bucknor (West Indies) and Suresh Shastri (India)
Third umpire: Ameesh Saheba (India)
Match referee: Chris Broad (England)